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  • 4 questions to ask about your variable annuity Thursday, 13 Mar 2014 | 8:30 AM ET

    About $1.7 trillion is invested in variable annuities, yet most investors don't know how to value their holdings and evaluate fees and tax advantages.

  • Bonds and Rates Thursday, 29 Mar 2012 | 6:50 AM ET

    Topics: Annual Interest and Debt Maturity | Bank Leverage Rules | Interest Rate Swaps | Treasury Bond Prices and Yields | The Yield Curve | LIBOR

  • Central Banking Thursday, 29 Mar 2012 | 2:56 AM ET

    Topics: The Beige Book | Debt Ceiling | The Federal Reserve | Federal Reserve Open Market | National Debt | Quantitative Easing

  • Commodities Thursday, 29 Mar 2012 | 8:28 AM ET

    Topics: Arbitraging Futures | Backwardation | Commodity Futures | Contango | Forward Contracts | Futures Curves | Futures Margins | Hedging Futures Contracts

  • Corporate Accounting Thursday, 29 Mar 2012 | 9:34 AM ET

    Topics: 10-K | Income Statements | Capital Structure | Book Value Vs. Market Value | Amortization and Depreciation | Mark-to-Market Accounting | Pensions

  • Crime and Law Thursday, 29 Mar 2012 | 1:49 AM ET

    Topics: Dodd-Frank Act | Executive Orders | Farm Bill | Insider Trading | Internet Neutrality | Overtime Pay | Securities and Exchange | Tax Reform

  • Currencies Thursday, 29 Mar 2012 | 8:51 AM ET

    Topics: Bitcoin | China-U.S. Currency Situation | China's Floating Exchange Rate | China's Currency Peg | Currency Carry Trade | Deflation | Hyperinflation | Inflation | Stagflation |

  • Economy Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 3:36 AM ET

    Topics: Continuing Resolution | Consumer Price Index | Deflation | Debt Ceiling | Fiscal Cliff | Federal Funds Rate | Hyperinflation | Inflation | The Laffer Curve | Market Correction | Medicare and Medicaid | Producer Price Index | Recession | Sequestration | Stagflation | Social Security | Unemployment |

  • Equities Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 3:03 AM ET
    Traders work on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

    Topics: Stock Shorting | Market Capitalization | Alpha and Beta | Initial Public Offering | Preferred Stock | Front running

  • Funds & Investments Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 4:28 AM ET

    Topics: Breaking the Buck | Money Market Funds | Closed-End Mutual Funds | Exchange-Traded Funds(ETFs) | Hedge Funds | Open-Ended Mutual Funds | Variable Annuities | Volcker Rule

  • Global Economy Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 2:37 AM ET

    Topics: The IMF | BRICS | Gross Domestic Product| PIIGS | EFSF | Sovereign Debt | Vatican Finances

  • Markets Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 2:49 AM ET

    Topics: Market Circuit Breakers | Mortgage-Backed Securities | Capitulation | Real Vs. Nominal Returns | Roadshow | Arbitrage | Credit Default Swaps | Witching Hour | Limit Up, Limit Down | Collateralized Debt Obligations | Fair Value |Private Equity | High Frequency Trading | Wells Notice | Moving Day Average | Quantitative Trading | Denial of Service Attack

  • Mergers and Acquisitions Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 7:59 AM ET

    Topics: Merger Arbitrage | Stock Dilution | Stock Price Behavior After an Acquisition | Leveraged Buyouts (LBOs) | Equity Acquisitions

  • Options Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 3:10 AM ET
    Traders on the floor of the New York Stock Exchange.

    Topics: Put-Call Parity Arbitrage | 'Long Straddle' Options Strategy | Options as Investments | Put Options as Protection | Reading Options Quotes | Put Options | Call Options

  • Personal Finance Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 7:23 AM ET

    Topics: Life Insurance and Death Probability | Investing vs. Paying Off Loans | Healthcare Exchanges | Obamacare | Obamacare Costs | Obamacare Deadlines | MyRA | Variable Annuities

  • Real Estate Tuesday, 12 Mar 2013 | 10:43 AM ET

    Topics: Under Water Mortgages | Case-Shiller Home Price Index | REO | Housing Starts | Jumbo Mortage

  • Taxes Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 8:00 AM ET

    Topics: The Alternative Minimum Tax | Carried Interest | Gingrich-Edwards tax loophole| Tax Deductions | U.S. Income Tax Basics | Tax Reform

  • Technology Friday, 30 Mar 2012 | 7:05 AM ET

    Topics: 4G | Cloud Computing | Denial of Service Attack | Email Encryption | Front Running | High Frequency Trading | Malware | Messaging Services | Streaming Music

About CNBC Explains

  • Welcome to CNBC Explains, where we dissect the complicated economics of our world — everything from stocks and corporate balance sheets, to international trade and government policy.

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Latest Special Reports

Central Banking Explained

Corporate Accounting Explained

Crime and Law Explained

Currencies Explained

Economy Explained

  • Sequestration is a fiscal policy procedure adopted by Congress to deal with the federal budget deficit.

  • Americans often check their receipts to make sure they've bought everything they need, and probably to see if what they paid this time is any different from the last trip. The government does the same with the Consumer Price Index. Here are the details. 

  • An employee stacks mini solar cells after ends are soldered on them at the Xunlight Corp. factory in Toledo, Ohio, U.S.

    The producer price index is a key economic measurement especially when it comes to inflation.

Equities Explained

  • In conventional terms, front running is something that happens within a firm. That definition has changed recently.

  • Alpha and beta are important tools for many investors when it comes to figuring out investment returns. So what are they exactly and how do they work? CNBC explains.

  • An initial public offering—or IPO as it's most commonly called—is the way for companies to go from private to public and sell stock shares in their firm. Here's a look at how the IPO process unfolds as CNBC explains.

Funds & Investments Explained

  • About $1.7 trillion is invested in variable annuities, yet most investors don't know how to value their holdings.

  • Former U.S. Federal Reserve Chairman Paul Volcker

    Paul Volcker was Chairman of the Federal Reserve under Presidents Reagan and Carter. But his name is becoming more well-known for a part of the Dodd–Frank  reform bill. It's called the Volcker rule, and CNBC explains.

  • Exchange-Traded Funds, also known as ETFs, are a new breed of investments. In a nutshell, they are managed funds that can be traded on the open market. Salman Khan of the Khan Academy illustrates the flexibility of ETFs in an example.

Global Economy Explained

  • As Pope Francis assumes leadership of the world's 1.2 billion Catholics, he's got his work cut out for him on many fronts.

  • There are all kinds of debt—as small as personal debt or as large as national debt. There's another type of debt as important as the rest—called Sovereign Debt. CNBC Explains.

  • PIIGS is a not too favorable term used by bond analysts, academics, and the press, to refer to certain countries of Europe. CNBC explains.

Markets Explained

Personal Finance Explained

Taxes Explained

Technology Explained

  • In conventional terms, front running is something that happens within a firm. That definition has changed recently.

  • You don't have to be Edward Snowden to hide your email from the NSA. Here is a basic primer on email encryption.

  • Cloud computing means being able to access the Internet anywhere, anytime and being able to use any and all of the data and applications you want.

Real Estate Explained

CNBC Explains